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with man in England, while another, as well as the allied Dinictis, has been found in the Mauvaises Terres of Nebraska, associated with Anchitherium and other extinct and equally remarkable forms, which are certainly Miocene if not, as some geologists think, belonging to the Eocene period. These facts clearly indicate that we have as yet made little approach to discovering the epoch when Felidae originated, since the oldest forms yet discovered are typical and highly specialized representatives of a group which is itself the most specialized of the Carnivora. Another genus, Pseudoelurus, is common to the Miocene deposits of Europe and North America.
The Cryptoprocta ferow, a small and graceful cat-like animal, peculiar to Madagascar, was formerly classed among the Viverridae, but is now considered by Professor Flower to constitute a distinct family between the Cats and the Civets.
FAMILY 25–VIVERRIDAE (8–38 Genera, 100 species)
- NEARCTIC SUB-REGIONs.
SUB-REGIONB. l. SUB-REGIONs.
ETHIOPIAN | ORIENTAL ----| * = * * |- a-- 1.a.s." 1.a.a.a. 1 — — —
The Viverridae comprise a number of small and moderate-sized carnivorous animals, popularly known as civets, genets, and ichneumons, highly characteristic of the Ethiopian and Oriental regions, several of the genera being common to both. A species of Genetta, and one of Herpestes, inhabit South Europe; while Viverra extends to the Moluccas, but is doubtfully indigenous. The extreme geographical limits of the family are marked by Genetta in France and Spain, Viverra in Shanghae and Batchian Island, and Herpestes in Java and the Cape of Good Hope. The following are the genera with their distribution as given by Dr. J. E. Gray in his latest British Museum Catalogue: Sub-family WIVERRINAE-Viverra (3 species), North and tropical Africa, the whole Oriental region to the Moluccas; Viverricula (1 species) India to Java; Genetta (5 species), South Europe, Palestine, Arabia, and all Africa; Fossa (1 species), Madagascar; Linsang (2 species), Malacca to Java; Poiana (1 species), West Africa; Galidia (3 species), Madagascar; Hemigalea (1 species), Malacca and Borneo; Arctictis (1 species) Nepal to Sumatra and Java; Nandinia (1 species), West Africa; Paradowurus (9 species), the whole Oriental region; Paguma (3 species), Nepal to China, Sumatra, and Borneo; Arctogale (1 species), Temasserim to Java. . Sub-family HERPESTINAE.-Cynogale (1 species), Borneo; Galidictis (2 species), Madagascar; Herpestes (22 species), South Palaearctic, Ethiopian, and Oriental regions; Athylaa, (3 species), Tropical and South Africa; Galogale (13 species), all Africa, North India, to Cambodja ; Galerella (1 species), East Africa; Calictis (1 species),Ceylon (?); Ariella (1 species), South Africa; Ichneumia (4 species), Central, East, and South Africa; Bdeogale (3 species), West and East Africa; Urva (1 species), Himalayas to Aracan; Toeniogale (1 species), Central India; Onychogale (1 species), Ceylon; Helogale (2 species) East and South Africa; Cynictis (3 species), South Africa. | Sub-family RHINOGALIDAE-Rhinogale (1 species), East Africa; Mungos (3 species), all Africa; Crossarchus (1 species), Tropical Africa; Euplores (1 species), Madagascar; Suricata (1 species), South Africa. Fossil Viverridae.—Several species of Viverra and Genetta have been found in the Upper Miocene of France, and many extinct genera have also been discovered. The most remarkable of these was Ictitherium, from the Upper Miocene of Greece, which has also been found in Hungary, Bessarabia, and France. Some of the species were larger than any living forms of Viverridae, and approached the hyaenas. Other extinct genera are Thalassictis and Soricietis from the Upper Miocene, the former as large as a panther; Tylodon, of Small size, from the Upper Eocene; and Palaeonyctis from the Lower Eocene, also small and showing a very great antiquity for this family, if really belonging to it.
The curious Proteles or Aard-wolf, a highly-modified form of hyaena, approaching the ichneumons, and feeding on white ants and carrion, is peculiar to South Africa.
The Hyaenas are characteristically Ethiopian, to which region two of the species are confined. The third, Hyaena striata, ranges over all the open country of India to the foot of the Himalayas, and through Persia, Asia Minor, and North Africa. Its fossil remains have been found in France.
Eatinct Species.—The cave hyaena (H. Spelaea) occurs abundantly in the caverns of this country and of Central Europe, and is supposed to be most nearly allied to the H. crocuta of South Africa. Another species is found in Some parts of France. The earliest known true hyaenas occur in the Pliocene formation in France, in the Red Crag (Older Pliocene) of England, and in the Upper Miocene of the Siwalik hills. In the Miocene period in Europe, quite distinct genera are found, such as Hyaeniotis and Lycaena from the Upper Miocene of Greece;
Iotitherium, supposed to be intermediate between Viverridae and Hyaenidae; and Thalassictis, uniting the weasels and hyaenas.
The Canidae, comprising the animals commonly known as dogs, wolves, and foxes, have an almost universal range over the earth, being only absent from the island sub-regions of Madagascar, the Antilles, Austro-Malaya, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands. With the exception of two remarkable forms— the hyaena dog (Lycaon picta), and the great-eared fox (Megalotis Lalandei), both from South Africa—all the species are usually placed in the genus Canis, the distribution of which will be the same as that of the family. T)r. J. E. Gray, in his arrangement of the family (Proc. Zool. Soc., 1868), subdivides it into fifteen genera, the names and general distribution of which are as follows:—
Icticyon (1 species), Brazil; Cuon (4 species), Siberia to Java; Lupus (5 species), North America, Europe, India to Ceylon; Dieba (1 species), North and West Africa; Simenia (1 species), Abyssinia; Chrysocyon (2 species), North and South America; Canis (4 species), India, Australia (indigenous 7) Lycalopea (2 species), South America; Pseudalopea (5 species), South America and Falkland Islands; Thous (2 species), South America to Chili; Vulpes (17 species), all the great continents, except South America and Australia; Fennecus (4 species), all Africa; Leucocyon (1 species), Arctic regions; Urocyon (2 species), North America; Nyctereutes (1 species), Japan, Amoorland to Canton (Plate III., vol. i. p. 226). These are all sub-genera according to Professor Carus, except Icticyon. The same author makes Lycaon a sub-genus, while Dr. Gray makes it a sub-family
Eatinct Species—The dog, wolf, and fox, are found fossil in caverns in many parts of Europe, and several extinct species have been found in Tertiary deposits in Europe, North India, and South America. Two species have been found so far back as the Eocene of France, but the fragments discovered are not sufficient to determine the characters with any certainty. In North America, several species of Canis occur in the Pliocene of Nebraska and La Plata. The genus Galecynus, of the Pliocene of CEninghen, and Palaeocyon, of the Brazilian caves, are supposed to belong to the Canidae. Amphicyon abounded in the Miocene period, both in Europe and North America; and some of the species were as large as a tiger. Other extinct genera are, Cynodictis, Cyotherium, and Galethylaw, from the Eocene of France; Pseudocyon, Simocyon, and Hemicyon, from the Miocene; but all these show transition characters to Viverridae or Ursidae, and do not perhaps belong to the present family.
The Mustelidae constitute one of those groups which range over the whole of the great continental areas. They may be divided into three sub-families—one, the Mustelinae, containing the weasels, gluttons, and allied forms; a second, the Lutrinae, containing the otters; and a third, often considered a distinct family, the Melininae, containing the badgers, ratels, skunks, amd their allies.
In the first group (Mustelinae) the genera Martes and Putorius (13 species), range over all the Palaearctic region, and a considerable part of the Oriental, extending through India to Ceylon, and to Java and Borneo. Two species of Martes (=Mustela of Baird) occur in the United States. The weasels, forming the genus Mustela (20 species), have a still wider range, extending into tropical Africa and the Cordilleras of Peru, but